I’ve always found that there was something missing in many enterprise 2.0 / social business conferences. Strategic matters are matters, interesting cases are presented but there’s something missing : the project manager’s or practitioner’s very own practical and basic concerns. Not a matter of philosophy, theory or impressive use case but simple points of reference, contextualized returns of experience.
And I found a golden nugget at IBM Connect. A late afternoon session (one of those one often joins exhausted and where attention is very likely to be lost) where the room was full packed and that got unanimous feedback from the audience. “That what I was looking for”, “we should do the same for clients”, “I felt involved” etc. An unconventional session, with an unconventional format that was a frank success.
The model : during the weeks before the conference and even during the session, attendees submitted their questions by twitter, on internet or even using post-its during the session. The three jolly fellow compiled them by theme and handled them live on stage in a brand new format.
The format : for each question each protagonist had one minute to answer and share his thoughts and experience. 3 minutes and 3 points of view for each question. A timer and and buzzer where here to make sure no one will speak one second more than the allowed minute. As for the casing and identity, they chose something very close to a famous ESPN Show. By the way even the slide deck was looking like a TV Show.
The impression : fast, tonic sometimes offbeat. The goal was reached. Answers to very practical concerns, direct, without any blah blah or slack period. In one hour attendees got lot of content, answers to their questions, the whole in a very engaging and living format that grabbed everyone’s attention to such extent no one saw the time passing. An unusual format, close to a “pirate” session but a huge success.
If no video recording has been made, the speakers made an audio one they joined with their slides.
A format I’m really looking forward to seeing in other events.